13

In search of tools that tame financialisation

09 Dec 2022
With Julie Lawson & Michelle Norris

Where did we leave the conversation last time? After our 12 #Housing2030 podcast episodes about affordable housing that is mindful of climate sustainability, responsible land policy, better governance and finance were listened about 2,400 times, we launched the long-awaited “#Housing2030: Effective policies for affordable housing in the UNECE region”. The study that was led by Housing Europe, UNECE, and UN-Habitat draws on the experience of over 100 researchers, policymakers and housing providers from across the UNECE region and beyond, to define useful approaches, outline their advantages and disadvantages, and illustrate how smart affordable housing solutions can be applied locally.

A compilation of over 160 tried and tested practices were in the hands of UNECE Housing Ministers on 6th October 2021 in the UN Headquarters in Geneva and just a month later, the publication made it to COP26 in Glasgow. However, the work is far from being done. The #Housing2030 report set just the beginning of very big questions that we felt obliged to come back to.

So, we are embarking on a real journey to address the elephant in the room when it comes to housing affordability – the financialisation of housing and what are the tools that could tame it.

Why are we choosing exactly this topic? The facts speak for themselves. Home ownership in many countries is declining and is social housing. More are being forced to rent. Home prices  and rent have risen dramatically throughout the pandemic and the IMF cautions that private investors are increasingly active in the real estate market. 

This podcast is a joint effort with the UNECE and UN Habitat, we are also grateful for the support from Irish Research Council and Irish Council for Social Housing who is a member of Housing Europe.

I am Diana Yordanova, and in this new season of our #Housing2030 podcasts, I would like to do things a bit more differently. I am welcoming back two extremely knowledgeable researchers, the lead writer of the #Housing2030 report, Dr Julie Lawson who is an international researcher in housing systems at RMIT University Australia and Dr Michelle Norris, Professor of Social Policy at University College Dublin, who played a key role in the Housing2030 report, especially chapters on finance and governance. This time, they will be back-to-back with me addressing questions to influential decision makers about how can housing be looked not as a commodity but as a human right.

We must build more effective critical capacities to address the harmful causes of financialisaton. This is why, we will do our best to enhance knowledge about the policy design, implementation outcomes and how different financial flows and housing outcomes can be achieved.

Tune in for this new season of #Housing2030 podcasts.